Yet another act of belligerence by India and not an ordinary one too! An Indian submarine was detected in Pakistan waters but how close was it to our shores is not disclosed. Our only source of information to this Indian venture is media, which is not very explicit about it.

A media report says that it was not allowed to enter Pakistan waters. Another reports it to have been pushed away out of the Pakistan territorial waters – which implies that it had transgressed the Pakistan territory. Yet another one says that it was detected while snorkeling, making it easier to be located and identified.

Submarines surface to periscope depth to recharge their exhausted batteries which is normally done after a few days of their having been under water. Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) assets of the Pakistani Navy would have either spotted it or picked it up through radar or sonar. If the Indian sub had surfaced to breathe, for how long had it been there and w! hat was it doing? Was she on an intelligence gathering mission or trying to land saboteurs ashore or delivering weapons and explosives to the Indian agents already in Balochistan?

The question arises if it had been there in our waters was its presence known or not? If not, why not? In any case, now that it is established that the enemy sub did venture into our waters what guarantees are there that it won’t happen again. And what could be done to prevent such a re-occurrence? Should the matter be not taken up internationally at the UN?

Should China not be asked to augment our Anti Submarine Warfare Assets substantially to guard and protect Gwadar against any such future eventuality? After all it is in China’s own interest to secure its recently opened line of communication. And lastly, the PN must ensure that no such intruder slips away that easily in future.

Col.Riaz Jafri (Retd)
November 19, 2016